Guava Margaritas

If I were to rank what I imagine to be the benefits of living on a tropical island, I think that directly underneath the obvious (living at the beach), there would … Read More

Marshmallow-Candy Swirl Cake


I’ve been finding a lot of inspiration at the candy store lately. There’s something so wonderful about all those bins of colorful candies – jawbreakers, gummybears and jelly beans (and etcetera) – just looking at them makes me feel happy and energetic. (Or maybe I’m just having a sugar rush. It’s hard to say, really.)

My last trip yielded a giant tub of candy necklaces and an extra large package of strawberry-stripe marshmallows called Puffy Poles. The two looked so pretty when I held them together, I felt certain that they would live harmoniously on a candy-inspired cake.


I already had a clear image of what I wanted the cake to look like, so it was just a matter of choosing a cake flavor and putting it all together. The Puffy Poles are really soft and delicious with a pronounced strawberry flavor, and I didn’t want to take away from that. I ended up making a simple white cake swirled with pastel color. The frosting is Swiss meringue buttercream – it had to be. It doesn’t crust like American buttercream frosting, so you can take your time applying the candies and marshmallows to the sides of the cake.

My method for accessorizing the cake with the candy necklaces is demonstrated in the picture above. I snipped the elastic string with scissors and then gently draped the necklace around the cake’s top tier. It’s good to have another person help you pat the candies gently into the icing while you hold the two ends in place. The elastic is so small and stretchy, it is very easy to let go of the two ends before it’s completely anchored down. I’ll say it again for emphasis – it is VERY easy to let go of the two ends, so it’s a good idea to have a helper,otherwise you may end up with candy beads in spilled down one side of the cake. 
Once the beads are in place, you can pull out the elastic string! Viola!

I used two 6-inch springform pans for the bottom tier and one 4-inch pan for the top tier. It made for a dainty little cake, but with the added marshmallows, you’ll still need a standard 8-9-inch cake stand.


I really love the scratch-made white cake recipe I’ve included below, but there’s no reason you couldn’t give any cake the Marshmallow-Candy Swirl treatment. You can find Puffy Poles marshmallow in every color here, and bulk candy necklaces here.

Enjoy!

Marshmallow-Candy Swirl Cake
[click for printable version]

Yield: 14 servings: One double layer 6-inch tier and one single layer 4-inch tier
Prep: 1 hour, total time about 2 hours 30 minutes

Cake
3 1/2 cups/287g cake flour (such as Swan’s down, do not substitute homemade cake flour)
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
6 large egg whites, room temp
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups/12.75 oz whole milk, room temp
1 cup/113g unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups/298g sugar
Pink, yellow and green food color 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 6-inch pans and one 4-inch pan; line with parchment. 
Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. Whisk together egg whites and milk in a separate bowl; set aside.Beat butter using the paddle attachment until soft and creamy. Add sugar gradually and beat until light and fluffy.  Scrape down the bowl as needed.  Beat in vanilla.Add flour mixture alternately with the egg white/milk mixture.  Begin and end with flour mixture and beat until smooth on medium-low speed after each addition.Divide batter between three bowls evenly; color each bowl of batter with a food color. Divide batter between pans, pouring in different colors into each pan and swirling them gently with a knife or skewer. Bake 6-inch cakes at 350 for about 25-30 minutes. Bake 4-inch layer for 20-22 minutes. Let cool  slightly in pan, then turn out and cool completely.

Buttercream and decors6 egg whites1 cup/198g sugarPinch of salt1 pound unsalted butter, cubed, at room temperatureSeeds of 1 Tahitian vanilla bean
Blue food colorConfetti sprinkles for decorating
5 candy necklaces, multicolor
25 Puffy Poles strawberry marshmallows
Whisk together the egg whites, sugar, and salt in a large heatproof bowl. Set over the simmering water and whisk until the mixture is hot to the touch and the sugar has dissolved.Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.Beat on low speed for 2 minutes. Increase to medium-high until stiff peaks are formed.Continue beating at medium-high speed until the mixture is fluffy and has cooled (the mixing bowl should feel cool to the touch).Turn the mixer off and switch from the whisk attachment to the paddle. Turn the mixer on medium-low and add the butter, a few cubes at a time, beating until well incorporated before the next addition. The egg whites will deflate and thin with the first few additions – don’t let this discourage you – keep going.  It may also look curdled, but don’t fret. Beat on high speed when all the butter has been added. The mixture will thicken and become smooth after several minutes of beating. Beat in the vanilla bean seeds. Transfer about 2/3 cup to a bowl and fold in one or two drops of blue food color. Transfer frosting to a piping bag fitted with a large closed star tip; set aside. 
Fill and frost the cake layers with the remaining frosting. Stack the smaller tier, centered, on top of  the larger tier. Place the marshmallows vertically around the entire bottom circumference of the large tier. Using the blue frosting in the piping bag, pipe decorative swirls along the tops of the marshmallows. Sprinkle the blue frosting with confetti sprinkles.
Snip the elastic on the candy necklaces and, while holding the two ends, drape it across the bottom of the smaller cake tier. Don’t stretch the necklace! You want all of the beads to be perfectly lined up, and stretching will make them separate. Gently pat the necklaces into the frosting so they stick (I had to have a helper for this, it’s not as easy as it sounds!). When all the beads are embedded into the frosting, gently pull the elastic string free and discard. If you need more beads to finish the line around the cake, snip another necklace and place the beads onto the cake with your fingers. Repeat the process with the remaining necklaces. You will have candies left over – but don’t eat them! Safe them for the next step.
Pipe blue frosting stars around the top edge of the top cake tier. Place a candy bead on top of each piped star.
Serve cake to delighted guests.

The Cutest Lazy Spring Hairstyle Idea that Alessandra-Ambrosio-Approved

When even a braid sounds like too much work, you can count on this lazy hairstyle Alessandra Ambrosio wore over the weekend to keep you looking cute.

alessandra-ambrosio-hat-hair-spring-ponytail

She simply pulled her hair into a low side ponytail, slapped a hat on her head, and basked in the effortless beauty of it all. She didn’t even both hiding the elastic band (a recent Kim Kardashian move)—nope, that would have been too much fuss for this. Just simple, cute, day-off-friendly hair here.

Cute, no?



The Kardashians' Hair Colorist Dyed My Hair. Here's How It Turned Out

Say what you will about the Kardashians–and I know you will–but those sisters have some great hair. So when Matrix offered me the chance to get my hair colored by their celebrity stylist George Papanikolas, the same man responsible for many of Kim and Khloé Kardashian‘s best hair looks, I jumped at the chance. The last time I dyed my hair was almost a decade ago, in college, so I was still a bit apprehensive. A quick scan of George’s gorgeous Instagram feed put me at ease, though. If you want to go blonder, I quickly learned, George is the guy to go to. He’s taken everyone from Miranda Kerr to Nicole Richie lighter.

lindsey-hair-color-beforeMy virgin-hair before shot.

When I sat down in his chair at the Rita Hazan Salon in New York City, I told him I was interested in the balayage technique he’s known for, in which he hand paints highlights throughout the hair instead of using foils. I then showed him a Sofia Vergara pic I had spotted earlier. “That’s really light,” he said. Hrm, I didn’t realize it was, but OK, he would know. “That kind of change is something you need to work up to,” he continued. To get many of his clients to the level of blond they want, George says it oftentimes takes six months or more. He never wants his clients to feel uncomfortable with such a big change. Plus, it can fry the hair (been there!). After showing George a few more photos that weren’t quite so blond, he said the kind of change I wanted probably couldn’t be achieved with balayage. He recommended ombré hair coloring instead. “But isn’t ombré so over?” I whined? “I hate it when people say that, he said.”There are different kinds of ombré.” To keep my color modern, he said he was going to do a subtle ombré not dip-dyed ombré.

lindsey-hair-color-photosSome inspiration photos from George’s Instagram.

Then he got to work. He put exactly 11 highlights in my hair, teasing the hell out of each one before coloring it and wrapping it in foil. The teasing, he said, helps to evenly distribute the color for a more natural-looking effect. (P.S. Yes, it hurts when they have to be untangled.)

lindsey-hair-color-processYou’d think I’d know better than to put a photo like this on the internet.

A quick 20 minutes later, I was being shampooed. George recommended a little bit of toner to remove some of the brassiness.

After blowing it dry, he put a small amount of Biolage Blow-in Control Shape Memory Cream to help give me the signature Kardashian waves.

lindsey-hair-curlTexture! Waves! Yay!

I was in heaven! (Btw, how cute is George?!) And when people say ombré is low maintenance, they aren’t kidding. I haven’t colored my hair in two months, and it looks virtually the same as it did when I left George’s chair.

lindsey-unterberger-kardashianThe end result!



Rosie Huntington-Whiteley Travels with a Saint Laurent Bag

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley Travels with a Saint Laurent Bag

Here’s the endlessly chic Rosie Huntington-Whiteley arriving at LAX, carrying a black Saint Laurent Sac de Jour Tote. In case you’ve forgotten, Rosie is a model and an actress, but everyone here probably just recognizes her from appearing in pics just like these and dressing impeccably, all of the time. (If this job has taught me anything, it’s that you absolutely can make a career out of that, somehow.) You can get Rosie’s exact Sac de Jour for $2,950 at Nordstrom.

Khloe Kardashian Switched Up Her Hair Again—Her Third Big Hair Change in a Year

Over the weekend, Khloe Kardashian stepped out with hair much, much, much longer than it was last week, which can only mean one thing: The girl has gotten herself some extensions, making this the third big hair change she’s made in the past year.

khloe-kardashian-long-hair-extensions

How temporary these add-ons (done by her hairstylist, Jen Atkin) are, we’re not sure yet—if they’re clip-ins, they can even be for just a day. And the color and crazy-length look good on her, so if she does keep them, I feel the beauty gods will be OK with that. But then, she’s pulled off all sorts of changes over the past year, going from dark brown with highlights, to a honey light brown, then to blond with shaggier layers, and finally arriving at full-mermaid. And she’s looked fantastic at every stage.

Which of her recent hair phases has been your favorite?



Man Bag Monday: Floral Backpacks

Man Bag Monday: Floral Backpacks

In fashion, spotting something twice can be a coincidence, but once you’ve seen a similar piece three times, from three different brands, you can bet that you have a trend (or, at the very least, a trendlet) on your hands. It took no time at all for me to round up the three floral backpacks above, so you best believe that designers are looking to make dudes a little more flower-friendly for spring.

Finally, a Detailed Look at the Back of Anne Hathaway's Short-Hair Updo

The hair gods of Hollywood are smiling upon us this morning, my friends. At last night’s Rio 2 screening, where Anne Hathaway wore her growing-out hair in a twisty updo, photographers finally remembered to shoot the back view of the hairstyle for us—and in such good light that we can see every detail, right down to the hairpins.

anne-hathaway-rio-2-hairstyle-updo-2

anne-hathaway-rio-2-hairstyle-updo

We’ve been watching Anne grow out her pixie haircut with absolutely no sign of awkwardness and with an impressive variety of hairstyle ideas in her repertoire—but we haven’t always been able to get a sense of how she achieves such chic updos with so little length. This photo reveals exactly how small sections are twisted and then pinned against her head; the front section goes down behind her ear, but the other sections wind horizontally around the back of her head. This keeps them looking elegant rather than like a random bunch of pin curls.

Would you wear your short hair in an updo like Anne Hathaway’s?



Karlie Kloss Among the First To Carry the New Louis Vuitton Soft Lockit

Karlie Kloss Among the First To Carry the New Louis Vuitton Soft Lockit

The iconic Louis Vuitton Lockit appeared first in 1958, and seemingly endless new renditions have followed. The latest version, seen first in the brand’s new campaign with Michelle Williams, is my favorite by far. The supple Veau Cachemire of the Louis Vuitton Soft Lockit Bag provides a stunning appearance with a distinctive, ladylike feel.

I loved seeing this bag in the campaign images, but last week, supermodel Karlie Kloss brought the bag to life when she was spotted carrying it around her West Village neighborhood.

Kate Middleton Spent HOW MUCH on Her Hair for the Australia Tour?!

Next time you feel jealous of Kate Middleton‘s hair, remind yourself of this number: $10,000. That’s the amount—plus travel costs—the Daily Mail is reporting she spent to take her hairstylist, Amanda Cooker Turner, along for the ride on her tour of Australia.

kate-middleton-australian-tour-hairstylist-price

Which isn’t a small amount for 19 days, but, hey, the Duchess did her own makeup, so she saved somewhere. Plus, we were all pretty obsessed with her hair every step of the way (see evidence here, here, and here), so you can see why she thought it was important to keep her famous hair looking great.

Want more Kate Middleton? Check out all the outfits she wore on the tour.



The Best Way to Brighten Up Your Whole Look (Steal it From Keira Knightley)

Nothing brightens up your whole face like a lovely peach blush—something Keira Knightley proved over the weekend at the Begin Again premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival. The shade makeup artist Kate Lee used?

keira-knightley-peach-blush-tribeca-film-festival

Chanel Le Blush Creme de Chanel in Cheeky. It was part of a makeup look that was shooting for “neutral and natural but rich in texture.” And I think they hit it with this bright, glowing blush, don’t you?

Oh and if you’re in love with her skin here, she’s wearing Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet Foundation. Velvet indeed.



The Celine Fall 2014 Handbags Lookbook Has Arrived

The Celine Fall 2014 Handbags Lookbook Has Arrived

This is one of those posts that needs little introduction. Celine’s Fall 2014 handbags (which are pre-fall, in tradition industry terms) have surfaced in the form of an official lookbook, and contained therein is a lot of what we’ve come to expect from Celine, plus a few interesting handbag debuts.

The most notable of the new additions to the lineup is the Celine Belt Bag, which has a front strap detail somewhat similar to a popular bag from The Row, but with a more undone, casual feel.

Marshmallow Bunnies

Aww, look at them.  Aren’t they cute?  A bunch of little pink marshmallow bunnies.  After I shared this photo of them last week from Caroline’s birthday party, a lot of … Read More

5 Headbands Taylor Swift Wore This Month: Which Was Your Favorite?

Since (obviously) you’ve been preoccupied tracking Kate Middleton‘s outfit choices during her Australia/New Zealand tour, you might have missed Taylor Swift‘s tour de headband this month. To get you up to speed: Tay has been involved in quite the love affair with this hair accessory lately—she’s had at least five noteworthy headband moments in April alone (and who knows how many more she’s worn off camera).

On April 9, a teensy-tiny golden bow adorned Taylor’s bob.

taylor-swift-headbands-2

For an SNL afterparty on April 13, she slipped on this bedazzled silver-and-gold stunner.

taylor-swift-headbands

Taylor said it with flowers on April 22, whilst out shopping on a springy day.

taylor-swift-headbands-3

For an evening at the theater on April 23, she wore her hair up and adorned it with a skinny sparkler.

taylor-swift-headbands-4

The next morning, she switched to this daytime version—a simple gold band.

taylor-swift-headbands-5

My theory: When you have long hair, as Taylor did until recently, it can be trickier to pull off headbands without having a little bit of a Lolita vibe. But with a bob, like she has now, somehow headbands come off a bit more grown up. Perhaps because the hair has a more sophisticated/defined shape. Do you guys agree?

Which of Taylor Swift’s many headbands would you most like to copy?



Behold the Rare Hermes Kelly Doll Bag

Behold the Rare Hermes Kelly Doll Bag

I always learn new things on the PurseForum, and about 5 years ago, I remember seeing the ladies talk about the Hermes Kelly Doll Bag. They shared a photo of the bag, which is a classic Hermes Kelly with arms, legs, and a face smiling back at you and I thought it must not be real. But indeed it is, and this playful, rare design from the house of Hermes requires those who love it to go to great lengths to track down one of their own.

earth day love

It’s one of my favorite days of the year – Earth Day! I grew up with a dad who was very focused on green living long before it was popular, … Read More

Italia Artisan Pizza Oven Giveaway from Camp Chef

Mother’s Day is coming up and if you’re like me you have no idea what you’re getting the mom in your life. Today I’m teaming up with Camp Chef and giving away an Italia Artisan Pizza Oven. Camp Chef specializes in all things cooking outdoors, even some cool things indoors. Everything from the back patio […]

To read more about this post, click on the title…

thecoveteur: Real talk: only she would mix bejewelled Prada…

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Real talk: only she would mix bejewelled Prada heels with a leather harness.